Are You Willing?

follow JesusI’ve heard some Christians say that ‘taking up our cross’ means we have some heavy burden to bear daily… that’s worldly wisdom to me.  Jesus miracle of feeding the 5000 had just taken place, and now alone with His disciples, He asked them “Who do the multitudes say I am?”  They responded ‘some say John the Baptist, others Elijah and some say you’re a prophet of old risen again.’  Then Jesus said, “But who do you say that I am?”  Peter’s response “You are the Christ of God!”  He warned them and told them not to tell anyone, saying, “The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed and be raised up on the third day.”  This all led up to the verses in my photo.  Do you think that the disciples at this time knew what Jesus was even saying to them?  After all, they just boldly proclaimed and understood who He was.  When Jesus went to the Garden to pray before His betrayal, He praying fervently, in much agony, to the point His sweat was as blood when it fell to the ground. He prayed “Father, if Thou are willing remove this cup from Me; but not My will, but Thy will be done”. Jesus Christ knowing not only the physical pain, but the emotional and mental anguish He would suffer as well; chose to do the Father’s will.  Our daily cross to bear— surrender ourselves to our Savior and Lord, just as He said to the Father “Not my will, but thy will be done.”

 C.S. Lewis said “Until you have given up your self to Him you will not have a real self.”  Praying for all in the Body of Christ… ♥ Streim

 

Prayer NOT Politics

Recently I have spent a considerable amount of time reading, researching and studying the Word about this subject; in earnest prayer.  I am more than aware that I’m wading into deep water and some readers may be offended while others may even ridicule me, but oh well…  When my Lord Jesus and Heavenly Father urge me to write… I do so!   It matters not what any one person thinks of me.
With His grace, this is intended not to offend, but to promote a positive relationship with other members of the Body of Christ.  

I’m seeing a very startling trend across our country.  Many people believe that if we change from a liberal, Democratic president to a supposed conservative, Republican leader, our country is going to be fixed or is on the mend.  Nothing could be further from the actual truth.  I see some prominent Christian leaders  actively involved in political organizations that they believe will change this country.  I believe that is the WRONG path!   Here is why…

1 Thessalonians 5 gives us warnings, admonitions and commandments, which we need to read and heed: I pray as you read this chapter, that you do so asking the Holy Spirit’s discernment and for our Father’s leading through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Now concerning the times and the seasons, brothers, you have no need to have anything written to you.  For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night.  While people are saying, “There is peace and security,” then sudden destruction will come upon them as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. But you are not in darkness, brothers, for that day to surprise you like a thief.  For you are all children of light, children of the day. We are not of the night or of the darkness.  So then let us not sleep, as others do, but let us keep awake and be sober.  For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, are drunk at night.  But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation.  For God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us so that whether we are awake or asleep we might live with him. Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing. We ask you, brothers, to respect those who labor among you and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, and to esteem them very highly in love because of their work. Be at peace among yourselves.  And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle,encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all.  See that no one repays anyone evil for evil, but always seek to do good to one another and to everyone.  Rejoice always,  pray without ceasing,  give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.  Do not quench the Spirit.  Do not despise prophecies,  but test everything; hold fast what is good.  Abstain from every form of evil.  Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.  He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it.  Brothers, pray for us.  Greet all the brothers with a holy kiss.  I put you under oath before the Lord to have this letter read to all the brothers.  The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.

 

Many conservative, Republican Christians daily are slamming our president, our new candidates for office and our Supreme Court.  To me it is a disgrace to the name of Jesus Christ.  They like to  use 2 Chronicles 7: 14 “ if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”  The land the LORD spoke of here was the promised land and the people His chosen people, the Jews.  I know this entire passage in 2 Chronicles and the entire Old Testament was written (as breathed out by God) for learning, correcting, instructing in right living and for doctrine.  I know that God never made a covenant with America!  Praying for the government is godly wisdom, but we have a much greater task— being obedient to our Lord Jesus commands and His example.

I  urge every one who reads this entire post to stop and asks the Lord…   “Is America going to be changed by politics or by the power of the Sovereign Creator and our Lord Jesus Christ?”  Yes I believe we are to represent out Savior and God above all else. Yes I believe in being involved in our communities. But I also believe God is the one who allows things that are for His eternal plan for mankind.  Blessings to all  ♥ Streim  (This was originally posted on August 12, 2012.  I have made some edits for several reasons.)

 

Remind Me Lord…

Titus was a young Gentile the Apostle Paul led to Christ.  Titus traveled with Paul on several missionary journeys. At one point, Titus accompanied Paul and Barnabas to Jerusalem. Paul’s intent during that visit was to preach the Gospel message to the Jewish leaders, in private.  The Jewish leadership expressly told Paul that Titus be circumcised.  Paul opposed this.   Galatians 2:3-5 ”  But not even Titus, who was with me, though he was a Greek, was compelled to be circumcised. But it was because of the false brethren secretly brought in, who had sneaked in to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, in order to bring us into bondage. But we did not yield in subjection to them for even an hour, so that the truth of the gospel would remain with you.”  After Paul’s first imprisonment in Rome, Titus accompanied Paul to preach the Gospel in the east.  Landing on the island of Crete, they spread the Good News of salvation through Jesus to different cities there.  Paul could not stay, so he left Titus to help put in place some the new congregations.  However, Titus met with quite a bit of opposition.  Paul’s short letter is spiritual advice for Titus (possibly in response to a request from Titus).

Titus 3: 1-11 Remind them to be subject to rulers, to authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good deed, to malign no one, to be peaceable, gentle, showing every consideration for all men. For we also once were foolish ourselves, disobedient, deceived, enslaved to various lusts and pleasures, spending our life in malice and envy, hateful, hating one another. But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life. This is a trustworthy statement; and concerning these things I want you to speak confidently, so that those who have believed God will be careful to engage in good deeds. These things are good and profitable for men. But avoid foolish controversies and genealogies and strife and disputes about the Law, for they are unprofitable and worthless. Reject a factious (other translations use divisive) man after a first and second warning, knowing that such a man is perverted and is sinning, being self-condemned.”

These first 11 verses of chapter 3 I have read every day for a week.  I was feasting on the Word! (see Deuteronomy 8:3) The spiritual wisdom Paul shared with Titus reminded me as well; as Paul begins this chapter “Remind them…”  Prayerfully ask the Holy Spirit for guidance and discernment when reading this, as with any of God’s Holy Word. ♥ Streim

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